I am not a big fan of skyscrapers. For me, they are just tall structures. I do agree that a host of tall buildings have their own distinct architectural flavors and characters, though. Some of the world’s tallest buildings have cast their spell on my friend and me. Spellbound, we made our way to the Petronas Twin Towers (I am proud to call it my home country’s!), Taipei 101, Willis Tower and a little over a month ago, the Empire State Building. If there is one common trait that characterizes these buildings, I would say ‘an extremely long line to experience its main draw’ (just think about the not-seem-to-be-getting-any-shorter line to the Petronas Twin Towers’ skybridge). Anyway, each building that I visited has left its lasting mark on my mental map. Take Willis Tower for example. It has this amazing thing called the Ledge. Fast facts about the Ledge: it refers to the glass boxes extending out 4.3 feet from the skyscraper’s skydeck on the 103rd floor. When you step out onto one of the boxes, you get breathtaking views of the city of Chicago in a way that is a great deal more fascinating than from the skydeck. And
because they are glass boxes, you can pretty much see what is going on way, way down below. I do not think I have a serious fear of height. But the Ledge kind of made my knees go soft, and my hands become cold. My friend’s height phobia was more intense than mine. He urged me to go ahead, which I did. I stepped out onto one of the boxes with my eyes fixated on the glass wall. I swore I would not look down
(because I knew that’s when my fear of height would kick me hard). I put my hands on the wall, as if that would stop my knees from shaking. I looked to my right and left, and saw that the other Ledge fellow visitors were having a lot of fun. Fear seemed to be non-existent in their vocabulary. They inspired me, though. Slowly, I turned my eyes to the world below me. Doing that made the
entire experience even more memorable. I pulled my friend’s hands so he could join me. Together, we defeated our fear of height and could even have a good laugh while still out on the Ledge. We made it!!! 😀 … Well, I do not think I am completely free from a height phobia now, but… whatever! Oh by the way, while waiting for our turn
to experience the Ledge, a very sweet moment flashed before my eyes- a young man took the courage to ask his special lady to prom in one of the most adorable (though pretty scary) ways :-D. That is how I appreciate skyscrapers. I imagine they are like some ancient high-power beings that have witnessed many, many things that befall on mankind, conquered by mankind…the defeat of fears…the spark of romance…what is your story behind the skyscrapers, my friends?